Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Thinking and organising with iPads at OLA

What an exciting and exhilarating term it has been at OLA

This term the Year Four students at OLA have learnt so much and we have also been able to refine our skills taught in Term 1. The novelty has worn off, which has allowed for us to use the iPads as a quality learning tool across KLAs.

Before we start a writing task we would use Popplet to organise our thoughts.
William, a student in Year 4, says "Popplet is great. I can write down my ideas on the topic and then organise them in chronological order." Another child, Ryan, said that through using Popplet it minimises having to flick through pages to see their plan. Overall the students enjoy using Popplet as they aren't restricted to having their information on an A4 page and they are also able to include images which is great for visual learners.

Here are a few examples of Popplet being used for planning and brainstorming:

A flowchart on how to be safe at school

This student organises her tasks through Popplet

Both these students organised their research on Famous Australian Explorers

iMovie has been another feature that we have been using in our learning. Through iMovie students have been able to create book reviews using the Trailer feature. This has taught the students that they must think wisely about their choice of trailer, looking at how many images they need to put in order for the trailer to be complete. It has enabled them to also learn about copyright and plagiarism.

In Religious Education the students were given the option to present their knowledge of Baptism on their iPads.  Students were allowed to use an App that they felt most comfortable with. Some chose Keynote, others a Google Doc and iMovie.

Here are some examples of their work:

Some of the slides from Brady's Keynote presentation on Baptism

A video illustrating James' knowledge of Baptism

Throughout the term we have been experimenting with folders. At first we thought having separate KLA folders would be best. We later realised this was a bit tedious for the students to move their documents into the folders we needed to for them to use their Safari app on Desktop version. After the iLearn PL day we realised the best way to move forward was to enable students to create their own folders and for us to manage them. 

Reflection has been key for us at OLA, for as teachers we need to know our students, where they are at and where to go from. Through Forms and Spreadsheets we have enabled students to answer reflection questions. 
We found that by using Spreadsheets, students had to make sure they didn't press undo as it would get rid of other students' work. The benefit of it was that students could go back and change answers, use other students' answers to help guide their answers and also it allowed for us to include images, such as DeBono's Thinking Hats. Forms is a great way to get students' answers and it has a less cluttered layout. We realised from the get go that when creating a form we needed to include a box for their names. We have since used Forms to create quizzes and through the ad on of Flubaroo we have been able to allow the system to mark their answers. 

Example of Excel being used to reflect on Easter Hats based on DeBono's Thinking Hats

This is one of the forms we created. In order for students to complete, you must send them the Link.

The layout of the Form (student view)

Results are shown through a spreadsheet.

Our goal for next term is to implement a class blog, that will allow for students to keep their work samples, to allow for parents to see what they are doing in class and to be transferred to the Year Five teachers next year.

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